REPUTATION OF PEDAGOGUES AND IMAGE OF THIS PROFESSION IN LITHUANIA: POLITICAL, SOCIAL AND EDUCATIONAL ASPECTS
Global world and mass media changed the role of professionalism and the desirable ideal profession too. The changes in computer progress influenced new challenges for teaching and learning processes in lots of aspects. One of the main problems in the Baltic countries is the decreasing reputation of pedagogues. Since the internet and various computer programs occupied educational area, the teacher’s position became less prestigious. The teacher’s role modified – pedagogue is not a leader of knowledge any more, but he is the transferer of knowledge who helps to learn and study. This transformation raised a lot of problems in education and society: teachers do not want to work for low salaries and they are tired from work overload and difficult psychological circumstances; the students are free to evaluate the education process and the teachers work; society is changing its opinion about pedagogues due to mass media information that forms the stereotypes about profession; the politicians try to raise the motivation of pedagogues but lack the political will in this context.
All the factors create a huge transformation of the image of pedagogues in the consciousness of pupils, society and politicians.
Research object – the reputation of pedagogues and image of this profession in the position of politicians, society members and students.
Research goal – to reveal theory and research based key indicators that influence reputation of pedagogues and the image of this profession in different social groups: politicians, society members and students.
The research had been lasting for more than 7 years in Lithuanian context. 4 empirical researches had been done. Three of them were qualitative based. The first research was the qualitative content analysis of politicians’ opinion expressed in mass media or press about pedagogues / teachers reputation, image, importance and status and their future perspectives. The second qualitative research was the analysis of society members’ comments and opinions about research object that written in mass media articles. The comments of anonymous society members were selected according to the content coded and analyzed independent positions of the society. The third qualitative research was used to gather qualitative data from students’ perspective about their pedagogues’ image and reputation. Content analysis was used for qualitative data analysis and heuristic method for theoretical data interpretation in the context of paradigms. Also the representative quantitative research was used there (there were participated 700 students from Lithuanian schools).
The information presented in mass media about pedagogues during the last 7 years is mostly oriented to creation of negative image of this profession: the content of articles is based on pedagogical problems, financial and political discomfort. The opinion of society and students is divided into two different key categories. The first of them beholds negative image and reputation of pedagogues because of low salary, difficult working conditions formed as mass media opinion. The second part of participants upwards pedagogues’ profession and its’ importance. Politicians are positioning the second good reputation of pedagogues in the public discourse but do not support it with real actions.